The government last week announced that measures would be taken to stop doctors from prescribing medicines and drugs using their trade names.

“For the time being, we do not have required resources in the country to test the drugs, if not we will have no hesitation to launch a crackdown,” Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne said.

The Minister said that the Chinese government has agreed to provide the assistance to set up a quality lab.

“We are planning to complete the implementation within a period of one and half years. I am sure that we will be able to go for the banning of the brand name drug prescriptions by mid or end of 2018”, Senaratne added.

He also said that people should know that it is cheaper to go for the generic name of the drug as it is also exactly the same dosage, intended use, effects, administration, risks, safety and strength as the branded drugs.